Andreas Seidl supports the way in which race director Eduardo Freitas presided over the delayed start of the Monaco Grand Prix.
As rain began to fall on the Monte Carlo street circuit with the cars on the grid, Freitas called a halt to the start procedure after assessing the weather forecast to allow teams to react to the changing conditions with their tyre choices.
Ultimately, as the rain got heavier, full wet tyres became mandatory. A formation lap behind the Safety Car took place but the rain was deemed too heavy for racing and the red flags were flourished.
After a further lengthy delay and a power outage, the race finally got underway over an hour later than intended and following another stoppage to clear up after Mick Schumacher’s crash, the grand prix was eventually ended by the two-hour time limit.
Criticism has ensued about the hiatus due to a lack of information being relayed, amid reports that disagreements were occurring in Race Control.
But McLaren team principal Seidl, who saw Lando Norris finish sixth for his team and bag the point available for the fastest lap, believes things were handled correctly in terms of doing as much as possible to ensure safety.
“I would say in the end it was the right thing to do, what the race director decided,” Seidl told reporters.
“There was absolutely no need to start the race knowing what the weather forecast was and to rush it, because there was simply no point taking the risk and ending up with a lot of crashes, especially at that track.
“From this point of view, I think everything was done in the right way with safety first.”
There have been suggestions in some quarters that the FIA have become too cautious in not allowing racing to take place in significant rain, but Seidl does not subscribe to that viewpoint.
“There was no point, knowing also what the weather forecast was, to take that unnecessary big risk,” insisted the German.
“After we tried to start the race in the wet conditions, there was no way to start the race. The cars were aquaplaning all over the place and visibility was poor, so I think it was well handled.
“And from a team perspective, to be honest as well, knowing how low we all are on parts this year under a cost cap, one of the positives of the race day was that both cars were still in one piece.”
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